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Garlic may help kill food poisoning bacteria

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Published : 2012-05-03 18:37
Updated : 2012-05-03 18:37

Garlic can help prevent food poisoning, new research has found.

Researchers at Washington State University in the United States said Wednesday that a compound in garlic is 100 times more effective than two popular antibiotics at eliminating one of the main causes of food poisoning, citing their latest laboratory test results.

The finding suggests that the compound called “diallyl sulphide” easily penetrates and kills Campylobacter bacterial cells by combining with an enzyme containing sulfur and changing its function. This means adding garlic to foods may help reduce this contaminant and possibly help the body fight it.

Most Campylobacter infections are triggered by eating raw or undercooked poultry or foods that have been contaminated from insanitary surfaces and utensils. It is also one of the most common bacterial causes of food-borne illnesses.

“This work is very exciting to me because it shows that this compound has the potential to reduce disease-causing bacteria in the environment and in our food supply,” said Xiaonan Lu, a postdoctoral researcher and lead author of the paper.

The discovery was published in the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy.

By Gukby Sim (simgukby@heraldcorp.com)

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